Facebook is breaking ground on a new, custom data center in Prineville, Oregon. The multi-million dollar new center means over 200 jobs during its 12-month construction phase. When finished, the data center will employ at least 35 full-time workers and dozens more part-time and contract employees.
In a press release issued from Washington D.C., Oregon Senator Ron Wyden said the following:
“The more than 200 construction jobs and 35 full-time positions that this project will bring to Prineville could not come at a better time, but the technology and training that comes from partnering with a pioneer like Facebook positions Oregon firmly on the cutting edge. While it is never hard to convince anyone that Oregon is a good place to call home, the Governor deserves a lot of credit for making this project a reality. I believe that today’s announcement will be the first of many as Oregon takes its place among the world’s technological leaders.”
In addition to Wyden’s statement, Senator Jeff Merkley and Governor Ted Kulongoski also issued press releases praising the new development. Kudos in particular to Kulongoski and his staff for working behind the scenes for many months to make the center in Oregon a reality.
InfoWorld reports, using energy-saving techniques such as free cooling, Facebook’s new data center in Oregon could be among the world’s greenest:
According to Facebook VP of technical operations Jonathan Heiliger, Facebook plans to achieve its remarkably low PUE through several energy-saving techniques. Among them, Facebook will use an airside economizer between 70 and 80 percent of the time to cool the facility with outside air. This technique is also known as “free cooling.” The rest of the time, the facility will employ an evaporative cooling system, which evaporates water to cool incoming air, rather than using a more energy-intensive traditional chiller system.
Facebook reports that it will reuse server heat to keep offices toasty during the colder months. Additionally, the company says it’s adopting a proprietary UPS (uninterruptable power supply) technology that reduces electricity usage by as much as 12 percent.
This new, green, energy efficient data center is great news for Oregon’s economy. The new center should act as a big “open for business sign” for other companies in this quickly growing field. The new development sends a signal to the rest of the world that Oregon is a player in the ever expanding and growing field of technology. The story is a great example of how the public and private sector can work together to create economic opportunity for Oregon communities.